Driveline chirps - any suggestions?

Muddy

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I am experiencing driveline "chirps" consistently in my TJ. They are clearly linked to driveline RPMs and not engine RPMs.

The sounds appear to be coming from front, passenger side.

Any suggestions on what this may be or how to diagnose?

Thanks in advance!

- Muddy
 

tworley

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Pull the rear driveshaft and see if it goes away (if you have a double cardan shaft).

If you dont have a rear double cardan shaft, pull the front driveshaft and see if it goes away.
 
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Muddy

Muddy

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Pull the rear driveshaft and see if it goes away (if you have a double cardan shaft).

If you dont have a rear double cardan shaft, pull the front driveshaft and see if it goes away.

Thanks for the advice, tworley. I will give that a try this weekend.
 

Jerry Bransford

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I'd pull the front driveshaft instead, it has a double cardan joint in it your stock rear driveshaft does not. When the front driveshaft's DC joint starts going bad it will start chirping, often described as "angry sparrows". If the chirping goes away have the CV joint rebuilt.

When the CV joint goes bad it can seize and cause the transfer case to literally break in half so I wouldn't wait too long to see if it's the front driveshaft making the noise you're hearing.

You don't have to entirely remove the front driveshaft though. Unbolt it at the front where it bolts to the front axle's pinion shaft yoke. Then secure the the front driveshaft up by using zip ties or similar to hold it securely up so it can't fall down while driving. I suggest this as unbolting the rear of the front driveshaft takes some doing, its bolts are hard to get to.
 

Murf926

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This is interesting. Mine has made that noise for years, but mostly in cold weather and only when I first start driving, and occasionally in any weather when I go from higher speeds down to about 30 mph for several miles. It always goes away once it warms up or when my speed gets up over 35mph for a 1/2 mile or so.

Thanks @Jerry Bransford. Now, I may finally be able to get rid of it once and for all. Seems like sooner rather than later would be a good idea too.
 

Thunderhead

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This is interesting. Mine has made that noise for years, but mostly in cold weather and only when I first start driving, and occasionally in any weather when I go from higher speeds down to about 30 mph for several miles. It always goes away once it warms up or when my speed gets up over 35mph for a 1/2 mile or so.

Thanks @Jerry Bransford. Now, I may finally be able to get rid of it once and for all. Seems like sooner rather than later would be a good idea too.

On the front DS if its not your u-joints you do have a centering ball joint in the CV
 
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tworley

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Pull the rear driveshaft and see if it goes away (if you have a double cardan shaft).

If you dont have a rear double cardan shaft, pull the front driveshaft and see if it goes away.

I'd pull the front driveshaft instead, it has a double cardan joint in it your stock rear driveshaft does not.


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Muddy

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This is interesting. Mine has made that noise for years, but mostly in cold weather and only when I first start driving, and occasionally in any weather when I go from higher speeds down to about 30 mph for several miles. It always goes away once it warms up or when my speed gets up over 35mph for a 1/2 mile or so.

Thanks @Jerry Bransford. Now, I may finally be able to get rid of it once and for all. Seems like sooner rather than later would be a good idea too.

Mine become less intense once everything warms up and at higher speeds, but it never fully goes away. Rattles and creaks don’t bother me, but squeaks (or chirps in this case) drive me nuts!

I’m pulling the front driveshaft tonight. I will update this thread with the outcome.
 
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Muddy

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Front U-joints are shot. Could this also be the source of my angry sparrows?
 

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CharlesHS

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Front U-joints are shot. Could this also be the source of my angry sparrows?

When driving your Jeep the front axle shafts are always spinning.
With that much play in the U joint cups; I wouldn't wait very long to replace them.
IF they seize up; the damage could be extensive.
 

AndyG

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Owners need to realize that front driveshaft failure is catastrophic on these- Especially if it is a Rubicon with the hard to find 241 transfer case-

Every time I purchase one I’ll just go ahead and rebuild the front shaft-

If you hear any noise and your diagnosis tells you it’s the front you need to act immediately and remove the shaft or do the disconnect- Just don’t forget and do not engage four-wheel-drive when you do that.
 
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Muddy

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Would somebody be so kind as to direct me to a thread or two that discusses the merits of repair vs. replace vs. upgrade for front driveshafts? I am sure they are out there, but I am struggling to locate any.

For what it's worth my target end goal is manual lockers front/rear, likely on 35s, with upgraded stock axles. No TT planned, but I would like to remove the 1 inch drop brackets that are currently installed to return to stock skid height. And ultimately SYE and aftermarket DS in the rear. While I am working on the front DS, I would like to go ahead and make all accommodations needed for my end goal setup.

Thanks in advance.

- Muddy
 

AndyG

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You can call Tom woods and see what their typical front driveshaft price is and I’m going to say you’re going to get one rebuilt for probably half to 3/4 of that depending on your local driveline shop- Do you want to use the best joints made that is the performance right there-

Even if it means running it with no front shaft if you have to drive the vehicle get that thing out of there because it will destroy your transfer case if it locks up typically.
 

JMT

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Would somebody be so kind as to direct me to a thread or two that discusses the merits of repair vs. replace vs. upgrade for front driveshafts? I am sure they are out there, but I am struggling to locate any.

For what it's worth my target end goal is manual lockers front/rear, likely on 35s, with upgraded stock axles. No TT planned, but I would like to remove the 1 inch drop brackets that are currently installed to return to stock skid height. And ultimately SYE and aftermarket DS in the rear. While I am working on the front DS, I would like to go ahead and make all accommodations needed for my end goal setup.

Thanks in advance.

- Muddy

In that case you’ll be making a lot of changes. A new front driveshaft from Tom Wood’s is the way to go. I’d say wait till you lift, but a shaft around 42” will likely be correct. It is very close to stock length even after lifted. Get the longer splines option for better engagement..
 
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